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D.S.G.M.C.'s Guru Granth Translation Scam
By VARINDER WALIA and PAWAN KUMAR
The Tribune, Amritsar, Mar. 14, 2005
Photo: Sukhpreet Singh Udhoke, vice-president of the Global United Research and Service Institute of Knowledge for Humanity (G.U.R.S.I.K.H.), and Avtar Singh of the Naujwan Khalsa Phulwari at a press conference in Amritsar on Sunday.
'I can't understand or read Punjabi . . . It was the grace of the Almighty which made me accomplish the gigantic task of translating Guru Granth Sahib into different languages.'
These are excerpts of video clips taken during a sting operation, which exposed the biggest ever 'translation scam' of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (D.S.G.M.C.) spanning over four decades.
This is for the first time that spy cameras were used by certain Sikh organisations to expose the D.S.G.M.C. The translation/transliteration done by Mr. Vemaraju Bhanu Murti, a Telugu-speaking person, and assigned by the D.S.G.M.C., had glaring discrepancies. The translation and publication of Gurbani involved a huge budget, which seem to have gone waste.
The sting operation was carried out by the Delhi-based Global United Research and Service Institute of Knowledge for Humanity (G.U.R.S.I.K.H.) along with the Naujwan Khalsa Phulwari (N.K.P.). These organisations have urged Akal Takht to get the matter investigated and take stern action against the guilty.
However, Mr. Parmjit Singh Sarna, President, D.S.G.M.C., has said that he had withdrawn the work from Mr. Murti. He said the D.S.G.M.C. would constitute an inquiry committee to take action against those who were involved in assigning the translation task to a non-Punjabi-speaking person.
Dr. Sukhpreet Singh Udhoke, vice-president of G.U.R.S.I.K.H., and Mr. Avtar Singh of the N.K.P. at a press conference here today alleged large-scale misuse of golak funds in getting Guru Granth Sahib translated into Telugu and 17 other languages.
They alleged misappropriation worth lakhs in connivance with D.S.G.M.C. members. They alleged that Mr. Murti was honoured with siropa and described as 'panth vidvan.'
They alleged that during the translation, the meaning of certain stanzas of Gurbani was distorted.
Dr. Sukhpreet Singh said from 1962 to 1999 only Sukhmani Sahib and Japuji Sahib was translated and that too only in Telugu, but surprisingly after 1999 till 2002 the same person was able to translate Guru Granth Sahib into 17 languages in a short span.
Mr. Avtar Singh alleged that during the translation of Guru Granth Sahib, maryada was not observed. He requested the Jathedar Akal Takht to immediately ban and stop the publishing of the translations.